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The Campaign


The Wistar Institute, America’s first independent biomedical research facility, has always been at the vanguard of discovery. Since our founding in 1892, the Institute has been dedicated to improving public health, eradicating disease, and expanding the boundaries of knowledge through biomedical research and training.

Wistar has special expertise in cancer research and vaccine development. Our scientists have identified genes that contribute to breast, lung and prostate cancer, and created vaccines to protect against rubella (German measles), rabies and rotavirus. Today, our focus is on targeted therapies in melanoma, tumor immunology and translational research to transform cancer medicine, and new and more effective vaccines against HIV, malaria, and influenza.

Science and medicine stand on the threshold of a new era, and Wistar is poised to lead in meeting this challenge. Researchers from diverse disciplines actively participate in our brand of “Team Science,” coming together around a common question and pooling their expertise and resources in order to find answers. We are a small, resilient institution with far-reaching, yet achievable, goals.

Four years ago, we launched the $35 million Building Wistar, Changing the World campaign to support:

  • Construction of the new seven-story Robert and Penny Fox Tower. The first new building at Wistar in nearly 40 years, the Fox Tower is a splendid facility featuring bright and beautiful spaces expressly designed to enlarge laboratory capacity at Wistar (an increase of more than 30% over current lab space) and enhance our culture of collaboration and "Team Science."

  • Expansion and enhancement of laboratories and core facilities for high-speed gene analysis, computational modeling, and molecular screening. Outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment and technologies, the Fox Tower is the future brought to life today in the service of science, healing and human health.

  • Recruitment of faculty to create new centers of talent with a focus on research leaders in emerging fields.

  • Financial stability for Wistar’s future.

The Robert and Penny Fox Tower is newly opened and we are at a critical juncture, having achieved 85% of the Building Wistar, Changing the World campaign goal. We now know more than ever before about human health and disease and stand at the brink of cures and treatments once thought to be unimaginable. The opportunity to be an essential partner in Wistar’s leadership in this new era will not come again in our lifetimes. Please join us today in seizing this moment to change lives through science.